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According to latest weather statistics even though Okchi is moving off Thiruvananthapuram, travelling to Kanyakumari, and Kerala's coastal districts like Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Ernakulam is risky as the cyclone might intensify and hit these areas first.

Besides, the district collectors have been instructed to take all measures to prevent flooding and also evacuate public from low-lying areas, he said.

"We do not see the cyclone moving downward to south-eastern direction..." The storm was "very likely" to move west- northwestwards towards Lakshadweep Islands and intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm in the next 24 hours, IMD warned.

IMD has issued warnings about rainfall at most places with heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places very likely over south Tamil Nadu & south Kerala during next 24 hours and isolated heavy falls over interior Tamil Nadu and Kerala during subsequent 24 hours.

IMD Director in Chennai, S Balachandran said, "As far as fishermen are concerned those in Kanyakumari, Tuticorin, Rameswaram, have been asked not to venture out into sea till Dec 1 as wind speed will be 65-70 kmph".

The Indian weather department has warned cyclone Ockhi is approaching Lakshadeep.

On Wednesday the depression hovered over South West Bay of Bengal. The system also had the potential of intensifying into a cyclonic storm around the latter part of the first week of December.

Cyclone Ockhi casts a shadow of fear over Kerala more rain likely today
Torrential rain and winds wreaked havoc along the southern districts of Kerala Thursday

The storm named "OCKHI" is likely to gather strength in the next 24 hours to become a severe cyclonic storm as it moves towards the Lakshadweep Islands.

Fishermen have been advised not to venture into the sea along and off south Tamil Nadu, south Kerala coasts and Lakshadweep islands. Several districts including Kanyakumari, Thiruvananthapuram, Pathanamthitta and Kollam reported heavy rainfall and falling of trees resulting in disruption to traffic.

At one or two places of these regions, heavy to very heavy rainfall is expected as well, he added.

Chennai received around 6 cm of rainfall last night leaving many electric poles and trees uprooted.

Sea conditions would be high along and off south Kerala coast during next 48 hours and along and off south Tamilnadu coast during the next 24 hours.

A top official of Earth Science Ministry on Thursday said that the cyclone is now likely to hit Lakshadweep archipelago on December 2, Hindustan Times reported.

According to Madhavan Rajeevan, secretary in the ministry, the archipelago in the southern part of the Arabian Sea will start experiencing heavy rainfall and strong winds from Friday.